Essay On Media Influence On Eating Disorders

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The Media's Influence on Eating Disorders

The National Eating Disorders Association states that eating disorders are conditions that arise from factors including physical, psychological, interpersonal, and social issues. Media images help define cultural definitions of beauty and attractiveness and are often acknowledged as one of the factors that contribute to the rise of eating disorders (NEDA). The National Eating Disorders Associations website, "The Effect of the Media on Body Satisfaction in Adolescent Girls", "The Media's Influence on Body Image Disturbance and Eating Disorders", and "Dieting Behaviors, Weight Perceptions, and Life Satisfaction Among Public High School Adolescents" are all articles that evaluate how the media …show more content…

Thirteen percent of 10th graders have reported vomiting, or using laxatives and diuretics to lose weight (Champion and Furnham 214). Many teens have resorted to eating disorders to shed extra pounds and in recent decades anorexia nervosa has increased. Adolescents who develop eating disorders tend to also have low-self esteem, a negative body image, and feelings of inadequacy, anxiety, social dysfunction, depression, and moodiness (Valois et al. 271). Body dissatisfaction can cause eating disorders, and eating disorders can then cause even more negative body image perceptions. Many teenage girls are turning to eating disorders to relieve their body dissatisfaction, but these behaviors will eventually damage their physical and emotional health, self-esteem, and self-control which will not improve their perception of their body image.

One of the main reasons that girls think they need to be thinner than they actually are, is because they are exposed to media images that help define what beautiful and attractive should be. The average teenager watches 3-4 hours of TV each day. In a study of 4,794 TV commercials, one out of every 3.8 commercials sends some sort of ?attractive message? (?NEDA?). So the average teenager is exposed to a lot of messages emphasizing attractiveness, which can cause them to want to feel more attractive.

Being exposed to television and

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